Don't Separate the Personality from the Player

LeBron ShaqBack in September, I wrote a surprisingly stodgy column on the future of Gilbert Arenas. ↵Sparked by recent comments from Flip Saunders, I ended up wondering if ↵we didn't just need a new Gil on the floor, but a new attitude to go ↵with it. Distracted by DeShawn's new ink, ↵I somehow missed when, days later, Arenas himself went down a similar ↵path: "I'm not the entertainer anymore ... When I was entertaining, all ↵you guys focused on was my words. Now I'd rather you just focus on my ↵basketball." ↵
↵
↵Thus far, Arenas has followed through on it, even going so far as ↵to get a fine. And I guess whatever part of me wrote that other ↵column—probably a longtime Gil fan tired of hoping for a return to ↵form, and anxious about the inevitable pile-on—is happy with it. But as ↵I watch the news coming out of Wizards camp, and monitor the Twitter ↵accounts of other Wiz players, it becomes pretty clear to me that a ↵dead-serious Gil would be totally out of place on this team. In large ↵part, this is because he'd set the tone when he was healthy. If not ↵their leader, he was such a strong personality that others couldn't ↵help but be swayed by him. Gil may want to go straight, and Saunders ↵may expect him to take the reins of the team. But the levity he brought ↵to the team is a big part of their chemistry, their ability to work ↵together. Take that away, and suddenly, ironically, a new, improved Gil ↵could be detrimental to the team. ↵
↵
↵Read the rest of this entry >>↵

This post originally appeared on the Sporting Blog. For more, see The Sporting Blog Archives.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join SBNation.com

You must be a member of SBNation.com to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SBNation.com. You should read them.

Join SBNation.com

You must be a member of SBNation.com to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SBNation.com. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.